U.S. Air Force
The Atlas was the United States Air Force's first operational Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM). The Atlas had been in development since the end of World War II in 1945. A test model that only had a range of 600 miles, known as the Atlas A, was launched at Cape Canaveral, Florida in June 1957.
The Atlas then went through several upgrades. The Atlas D had three consecutive test failures in spring 1959. In each case, the missile exploded within three minutes of launch. Finally, on July 28, 1959, a fourth test was successful. Following this, the 576th Strategic Missile Squadron with three Atlas D missiles was deployed on October 31, 1959 at Vandenburg Air Force Base in Southern California.
Over the next six years the upgraded Atlas E and F were also deployed across the United States. At their peak, 132 Atlas sites were operational from December 1962 through May 1964. After that time, the Atlas was phased out in favor of Minuteman and Titan ICBM's.
The Atlas D had two different shelter configurations. The first held the missiles vertically in gantry launchers. The second held the missiles in above ground "coffin" shelters. Atlas D's were operational from October 1959 through October 1964. A total of 30 Atlas D's were placed in the field, based out of Vandenburg Air Force Base in California (6), F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming (15) and Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska (9)
Atlas E's were operational from September 1961 through January 1965. A total of 28 Atlas E's were placed in the field, based out of Vandenburg Air Force Base in California (1), Fairchild Air Force Base in Washington (9), Forbes Air Force Base in Kansas (9) and F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming (9).
A total of 72 Atlas F's were placed in the field, based out of Schilling Air Force Base in Kansas (12), Lincoln Air Force Base in Nebraska (12), Altus Air Force Base in Oklahoma (12) Dyess Air Force Base in Texas (12), Walker Air Force Base in New Mexico (12) and Plattsburgh Air Force Base in New York (12).